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Entertainment, Food & Beverage

Healthy meals at Marine Terrace

Twenty-two of the 24 tenants in Marine Terrace Food Centre are now selling healthier food.
The Straits Times - October 1, 2012
By: Leslie Kay Lim
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Healthy meals at Marine Terrace Mr Goh Chok Tong and HPB’s chief executive Ang Hak Seng (far right) visiting one of the 22 stalls offering healthier fare at Marine Terrace Food Centre yesterday, as economical beehoon foodstall operator Tan Jock Lan (wearing an apron), 51, looks on. --

TWENTY-TWO of the 24 tenants in Marine Terrace Food Centre are now selling healthier food.

A ceremony was held yesterday to mark the food centre's inclusion as part of the Health Promotion Board's (HPB) Healthier Hawker initiative.

The HPB works with stallholders to substitute ingredients with alternatives such as oil with less saturated fat, low-sodium salt and wholegrain noodles.

The board's chief executive Ang Hak Seng said about 80 per cent of residents aged 60 and older in the Marine Parade constituency have at least one chronic disease such as high blood pressure.

"You want food that is not only tasty but also healthy and affordable," he added, noting that these changes cut down the risk of chronic diseases.

Marine Terrace Food Centre is the fifth hawker centre roped in to provide healthier choices since the initiative kicked off in April last year. The other food centres are in Yuhua, Geylang Serai, Eunos Crescent and Haig Road.

With 22 out of 24 stalls in Marine Terrace participating, the hawker centre has the highest take-up rate of tenants among those under the initiative.

The signboards of the stalls also show the calories per dish.

For long-time hawker Raymond Tan, 55, switching to healthier fare at his rice dumpling stall was an easy choice.

He said: "Nowadays, everyone is concerned about health... When customers see the healthy-food signboards, they're more willing to try the food."

Emeritus Senior Minister Goh Chok Tong toured the hawker centre, which is located in his ward, and commended the changes made to develop Marine Parade "as a place where senior citizens too can live healthily, actively and independently".

Regular patron Soon Chee Ann, 64, gave the thumbs up to the revamped menu. Digging into a bowl of Teochew noodles, the storekeeper, who suffers from high blood pressure and high cholesterol, described the taste as "good, and not very oily".

Mr Ang said the HPB hopes to list 50 hawker centres and coffee shops with healthier food offerings by the end of next year.

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